Puerto Vallarta has a thriving art scene which has been one of the attractions of this Pacific Coast port for almost 30 years. There are many art galleries in Puerto Vallarta selling anything from arts and crafts to contemporary art, with many galleries specializing in Mexican artists. In addition you will see a lot of sculptures and murals dotted about the city, especially in the tourist areas.
Puerto Vallarta’s Galleries
It is impossible to visit Puerto Vallarta without seeing an art gallery as the whole Downtown area and Old Town is peppered with them. One of the Longest running is Galeria Uno, which has been in the same location in Puerto Vallarta for the past 40 years, selling the work of key Mexican artists. You will also find galleries specializing in ceramics and folk art, as well as more contemporary galleries such as Corsica and the Omar Alonzo Gallery. There are some intriguing designer jewelry stores too.
Puerto Vallarta Art Walk
On Wednesday nights during the high season from November through April there is a long running Art Walk that features a number of art galleries in Puerto Vallarta’s Downtown area who open their doors to the public and offer a glass of wine and frequently the chance to meet the artists. It is great activity that generates a lot of movement around the Downtown area.
Art on Public Display
One of the wonderful elements about Puerto Vallarta’s art scene is that you get to see lots of art even without stepping inside an art gallery. The Malecon boardwalk, in particular, is home to a slew of amazing sculptures by renowned Mexican artists that line the seafront. You can also take a tour of the sculptures in English guided by the owner of Galeria Pacifico. Every sculpture has its significance to Puerto Vallarta and a story about the artist’s relationship with the port.
Puerto Vallarta’s Malecon is also a great place to see local artisans creating their art, whether that be a caricature or a finger painting of the tropical surroundings. On the beachfront you can see an incredible stone balancer, suspending rocks upon rocks in beautiful towers as well as sand artists. Frozen street performers are in abundance too, especially during the Holiday seasons and you can see anything from flying angels to sand men playing chess.
The Huichol are a thriving Native American tribe who live in the areas that surround Puerto Vallarta and Nayarit. Many Huichol cultural references can be seen in the carvings etched into the concrete of the new Malecon, with images of their sacred animals and plants. Their art is also on display in many galleries and artisan stores throughout Puerto Vallarta, where you will see their incredible beadwork and threaded paintings, all fixed with a beeswax serum. Their art makes a great gift for those back home as the work tends to be small and light but showing intricate craft and quality.